By Kyle Smith
At both Harvard and Columbia this fall we’ve seen how students who dare to privately act out against PC standards are inspiring crazed nuclear strikes from campus administrators. This disproportionate punishment is, in turn, bound to create both more rebels flouting norms and more wusses and tattletales passive-aggressively seizing power by parading their phony wounds.
At Harvard, the administration vaporized the men’s soccer season this year because the guys privately commented on the sexual appeal of their female peers, in jokey and disparaging language, in a document shared on Google Groups. The six women they were talking about later wrote, in a melodramatic group op-ed, that they “brushed off the news as if it didn’t really matter” until the publicity hubbub trained them to be gravely offended — “hopeless,” “appalled,” “distraught” — just as toddlers who fall down at the playground tend not to cry unless their mothers fly over to make a fuss, in which case they reliably burst into tears.
At Columbia, a bunch of sour fruitcakes running a campus blog invaded the privacy of members of the wrestling team by publishing their private text messages, apparently leaked by a whistleblower who confused bro talk with the Pentagon Papers. I won’t defend the crass and juvenile messages. Some contained the N-word and others included derisive comments about women’s looks, though none of this was harassment. Standing outside someone’s window calling out rude names is harassment. Exchanging jibes with a friend about people who aren’t there is more like gossip.
Columbia’s immediate response was, like Harvard’s, as dumb as treating your toe fungus by sawing off your foot. The entire wrestling team was initially suspended. What about innocent athletes who had nothing to do with the texts? Sorry, as in the Red Queen’s court in “Alice in Wonderland,” Columbia went with punishment first, trial afterwards. The administration was taking its cues from the student blog, which screamed that the messages revealed a “Culture of Intolerance.”
Read the rest here.